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Abstract Detail

Crops and Wild Relatives

Barnett, Jacob [1], Caicedo, Ana [2].

Fleshy fruit trait integration and drivers of divergence in the wild tomato clade.

The tomato (Solanum lycopersicum var. lycopersicum) is the predominant model system for the study of fleshy fruits, and its wild relatives present an exciting opportunity to gain insight into the poorly understood evolutionary drivers of fruit trait divergence. We quantified the extent of correlated variation (i.e. phenotypic integration) among traits in ripe fruits from species across the tomato clade. Plants were grown under common garden agricultural conditions in Massachusetts, and ripe fruits were phenotyped for 15 traits representing morphology, color, and nutrition. Our results support the hypothesis that bird-dispersed wild tomato fruits have higher integration values than mammal-dispersed fruits, suggesting a stronger selective pressure from birds. Traits likely favored by birds include reddish color, more glucose/fructose relative to sucrose, and a more spherical shape. Phylogenetic signal for each trait was also quantified, revealing that some traits such as seed count and hue are tightly correlated with evolutionary relatedness, while other traits such as soluble solids seem to be quite evolutionarily labile. Ongoing work will test for correlations with environmental variables from each species' climate of origin, providing further clues as to the relative importance of potential selective forces on fleshy fruit trait diversity.

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1 - University of Massachusetts Amherst, Graduate Program in Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, Amherst, MA, 01003, USA
2 - University Of Massachusetts, Biology, 221 Morrill Science Center, 611 North Pleasant St., Amherst, MA, 01003, United States

fleshy fruit
phenotypic integration
crop wild relative.

Presentation Type: Oral Paper
Session: CW1, Crops and Wild Relatives I
Location: /
Date: Wednesday, July 21st, 2021
Time: 1:30 PM(EDT)
Number: CW1003
Abstract ID:555
Candidate for Awards:None

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